tv [untitled] August 1, 2011 10:24pm-10:54pm EDT
at we've had to increase the debt ceiling. i argue, mr. speaker, that we don't have a debt ceiling problem, we have a debt problem. and that's why we're here today and that's why i believe that we, after months and months and months of partisan bickering, fingerpointing, we have at this moment begun a debate that will allow us in a bipartisan way to increase the debt ceiling, which we all know needs to be done, as simply as meeting the obligation of paying for past spending. many of us have been opponents of much of that spending but we recognize that the bill has to be paid. speaker boehner, when just days after we took the oath of office in 112th congress, reived the request from the president of the united states through his treasury secretary, mr. geithner, that we increase the debt ceiling. mr. speaker said then that he will agree it's essential for us
to increase e debt ceiling but we were not going to proceed with business as usual. we're not going to continue increasing the debt without getting to the root cause of the problem. and, mr. speaker, i've got to tell you that through all of the debate that's taken place, we have gotten to the point where we have a measure, it's a bipartisan compromise, it's a bipartisan agreement that i believe will, as i said, send a signal to those who are seeking to create jobs for our fellow americans, that we now are going to have the kind of fiscal restraint and responsibility from washington, d.c., the likes of which we haven't seen in a long, long period of time. so, mr. speaker, i will tell you that i strongly support this measure, as everyone has said it's far from perfect, but strongly support it. and i urge my colleagues, democrats and republicans alike, to join together in support of
it and with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the bance of hisime. the gentlelady from new york. ms. slaughter: thank you, mr. speaker. after months' long standoff over raising the debt ceiling, congress is now forced to take action on a bill that by all accounts is deeply flawed. i think everybody today has agreed with that. why are we doing a flawed bill? because we waited until the last minute. instead of reducing the nation's debt by closing tax loopholes for oil companies and private jet owners, today's bill instead creates a supercommittee that will decide how take over $1 trillion in cuts. this supercommittee will serve as a mock congress, leading 325 members of congress sitting on the sidelines while a group of 12 decide the shape of the country for a decade to come. ua no-brainer. indeed the debt ceiling itself is an antiquated solution to a problem we no longer face and should be eliminated. it was originally created to pay
for world war i, to provide our country with economic stability while at war. today we're again in the midst of war but instead of protecting the stability of our economy, some in congress have decided to question the necessity of paying our bills. as we all know by now, they've taken our economy hostage and demanded dranian cuts in exchange for not leading our nation into default. the actions have caused real and significant damage, roll call reports that because of the prolonged debt ceiling crisis, the interest rate the united states government must pay has already increased which means the interest rates for car loans and home mortgages are also increasing. the stock market has responded as expected. according to the july 29, big banks and companies withdrew $37.5 billion from money market funds that are described as a key artery for our economy. the dow jones industrial average lost nearly 5% of its v last
week which meant 401-k's, retirement plans, all of america -- americans were put at risk and much of it was lost. baby boomers across the united states watched nervously as all those things were happening. as i mentioned earlier, this type of crisis has become the new normal in this congress. under the republican rule, the house of representatives is re-- has repeatedly led our country to the brink of unthinkable situations. first we led the country to the brink of a government shutdown, threatening the jobs and hundreds of thousands of workers and endangering vital government services relied upon by americans every day. as we speak federal aviation administration is shuttered, costing the united states government hundreds of millions of dollars in lost revenues. because the majority refuses to pass a clean legislation that does not incde measures that threaten rural communities and the future of the airline unions.
the majority has brought us to the edge of a cliff in order to see how much they can get for not throwing the country into default. in january, speaker boehner promised the american people the debt ceiling debate will be an example of the, quote, adult moment, end quote, in washington. is this what he had in mind? just this morning my colleague on the rules committee, mr. dreier, went on national public radio to say his party has, quote, not torpedos the economy by defaulting, end quote. this statement defies reality. we've been brought to this point precisely because the leadership anhis party walked out of negotiations, demanded they get ideologically driven cuts before they will vote to protect the civility of our economy. last but certainly not least the crisis of the last few months has come at the expense of addressing the true crisis in our country, the jobs crisis th is facing millions of our fellow citizens. last month only 25 million americans failed to find full time work. many have been out of worko so
long that their unemployment benefits have expired as their skills erode and they are living on savegsings or charity from loved ones and friends. in response, we have not introduced a single bill in this house designed to invest significt government resources into creating jobs. instead we have repeatedly proposed cutting funding to investments in green technology, in transportation and infrastructure, destroying the promise of putting thousands of americans back to work in the jobs that can't be outsourced overseas. they've refused to extend unemployment benefits for those who can't find jobs and are moving nowhere fast to extend the payroll tax break that's helped to create the small number of jobs that we added in recent months. mr. speaker, it's time to seriously move responsibility to take any of the responsibilities of leadership and in doing so put an end to this slf-ilicted crisis. and focus on getting americans back to work.
i yield back the balance of my time -- no, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, i'd like to express my appreciation t my colleague for her great spirit of bipartisanship. with that i'd like to yield a minute and half to my good friend from stan stathen island, mr. grim. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york voiced for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. grimm: thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to ensure that the voices of those that i represent in staten island and brooklyn are heard. and what they have to say is actually quite simple. they expect of us to use common sense, to bring solutions to problems that this nation faces. and the problem that we face is not a debt ceiling problem, it's a debt problem. and the people on staten island and ooklyn, every day they go home and they have to figure out how to manage their household. they go to work and they have to figure out how to manage their small businesses. and you do that with common sense. that's what they ask of us.
you cannot spend money you don't have. you cannot continue to rack up debt with no plan to pay it off. today this debate is about moving america forward togethe in a bipartisan way, because this is not a democratic debt or a republican debt. it's an american debt which means that americans must come together to solve t problem. today is about solving problems. so i proudly stand here and i will support this bill, i will support speaker boehner and i will bring solutions to the problem, not just bickering. with that i yield bac the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts seeks control of the time of the gentlelady from new york? mr. mcgovern: i do. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. mcgovern: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to yield one minute to the gentleman from virginia, mr. moran. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from virginia is recognized for one minute. mr. moran: mr. speaker, we have never cut our way out an economic recession.
we've always grown our way out. but we've never grown our way out investing le than 15% of our g.d.p. in our people's potential. in fact, t last time we cut back on the way we're about to do today was in 1937 and that set us right back into an economic depression. but this time we're not going to have world war ii to rescue our economy. the federal investment in homeownership and higher education for our returning g.i.'s and theubsequent infrastructure investments in interstate highway system and the like created a permanent middle class after the war that lasted for two generations. but the middle class has never been more threatened than it is today. and this will con signt to stay in the same condition tha we find it today and it's not because we're a poor country. our largest corporations are experiencing record profits. the p 25 hedge fund managers are making more than $1 billion a year. our corporations are sitting on more than $2 trillion of cash.
mr. mcgovern: i yield the gentleman an additional ti. mr. moran: mr. speaker, the point is i understand this train is leaving the station but it's going in the wrong direction. we need to be investing in this country, not taking away the resources that will enablet to grow and for the poor especially those striving to be in the middle class, to achieve the middle class, to education, training and infrastructure investment. thank you, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: thank you very much, mr. speaker. at this time i yield a minute to my very good friend from ashland, wisconsin, mr. duffy. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized for one minute. mr. duffy: thank you, mr. speaker. i had a chance to watch this floor debate over the last week or so. to say the least you can say our tempers have flared. there has been a lot of rhetoric on both sides. as we come together today, the proposal that's been negotiated with both sides, with speake boehner, the president, harry
reid. it's deal that not everyone is pleased with. it's a deal that doesn't have in everything that i want, and i'm sure it doesn't have everything in the deal that my friends across the aisle would want. and that's why i think so many of us are hearing from our constituents. a lot on the far right and a lot on the far left saying we don't liket. but the bottom line is i think this is one of the great moments of the house where two sides come together and figure out how they are going to find a solution that doesn't work for their parties. it's a solution that works for the american people. and at this point in our history we owe $14.5 trillion. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, i'd like to yield my friend an additional 15 seconds. mr. duffy: $14.5 trillion. it's about time this congress come together and figure out a way to live within our means. this bill is going to start that process, though it doesn't go far enough. with that i yield back.
the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from massachusetts. point of view gove mr. speaker, i yield one minute -- mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i yield one minute to the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. fatah. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. fatah: this is an inside job. i want to offer just in evidence that, you know, we had in the words of the treasury secretary for reagan and for bush, an admitans they were running up deficits and it was one way to starve the government. and then we had the republican party at the height of its power, the presidency, the house, the senate saying, , we weren'toing to have any tax increases even though we're running up these high deficits. we're going to cut taxes. we're going to hemorrhage trillions of dollars in revenue and we are going to go into two wars, we're going to put a $7 trillion prescription drug plan on the financial pile of our
debt. and so alan greenspan in the first eks of t bush administration, he said, bush could leave offi but our country would be entirely dt free. what happened in the reverse was he doubled the debt, walked out with eight million americans losing their jobs. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. fatah: but said to those who wanted -- . fattah: but said those who would -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. dreier: i said to the next governor of indiana, my friend from columbus. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. pence: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. pence: thank you, mr. speaker. thank the gentleman for yielding. this is a challenging time in the life of our country. our economy is struggling. millions are outf work, and
now with a more than $14 trillion national debt, america's on the verge of having its debts exceed our statutory borrowing limit. now, i recognize if you owe debts pay debts. congress has an obligation to defend the full faith and credit of the united states. but this congress also has an obligation to keep faith with this and future generaons of americans by restoring fiscal responsibility and discipline to our national treasury. the bipartisan budget control act that we will continue today will make it possible for the nation's bills to be paid with no new taxes, dollar-for-doll cuts in taxes and it will give us to consider a balanced budget amendment to the constitution. now, let me be clear, the budget control act is not so much a good deal as it is a good start. i really believe this
bipartisan compromise is a modest but meaningful step in the direction of fiscal discipline and reform and i welcome it. now, while this bill doesn't go nearly far enough, it does move us in the right direction. you know, leadership means knowing when to say yes and knowing when to say no. i believe the time has come to get something done so this congress can move our national government back in the direction of fiscal responsibili and reform and begin to advance polics that will put americans back to work. last thought, there's a lot of credit taking on a day like today. a lot of bipartisan, back patting, as we say. but let me say this day where we see the ship of state turning ever so slightly through that lone star of fiscal responsibility this day does not belong so much to any one political leader, to any
one political party or to any one branch of government. this day belongs to the american people. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. pence: who have stood, who have clamored, who have come to town halls, who have demanded that this government live within its means. this is your day. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i yield the gentleman from georgia, mr. scott, one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia is recognized for one minute. . scott: thank you very much, mr. chairman. ladies and gentlemen of the house of representatives, this is, of course, a very important day, moment usus decision, difficult decision. i am going to vote for this in the best interest of our country and putting us in the area where we need to be. but i do want to point out one area of weakness that we need to look at very carefully as we go forward and that is in the application of this 12-member committee and especially as it relates to the areas of social
security, medicare and medicaid. now, my understanding is, and i think this is understanding that we certainly need to make clear, that social security and medicaid, veterans, pell grants are protected fully under this bill. but when it comes to medicare, my understanding is that there will be an opportunity in here where they will look at medicare on the provider side. the question becomes, how can you basically separate benefits of medicare patients when you have the patients, the doctors and the hospital and you can't adequately separate that? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. mr. scott: we must be mindful of the medicare apparatus. mr. dreier: i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: t gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: i yield myself 2 1/2 minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the
gentleman is recognized for 2 1/2 minutes. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i did t come to washington to dismantle the new deal or the great societ and i did not come to washington to force more people into poverty. i agree we must avoid default and confront or long-term fiscal policies. that's w on saturday i voted for the reproposal which would have reduced our debt by hundreds of billions of dollar but the bill before us today is unfair in so many ways. it disproportionately places the burden of dealing with our debt issue on the backs of those who can least afford it while it spares the wealthiest from contributing anything. there is something fundamentally wrong when a billionaire hedge fund manager pays a lower tax rate than his secretary, when big oil can make tens of billions in profits every quarter but can get sweetheart deals from the taxpayer. and when we're slashing dollars for roads and bridges. and there are no new revenues
in the bill before us today. only massive cuts in what is called domestic discretionary spending. but what did that actually means? it means less investment in our transportation and infrastructure. it means less investment in medical and research and education and food security. to put it simply, it means less jobs and higher unemployment at a time when millions of americans are struggling to find work. and despite the rhetoric of its supporters, the bills put social security, medicare, medicaid on the chopping block. we all know how we got into this mess. two huge tax cuts mostly for the wealthy that weren't paid for, two wars that were paid for, a massive prescription drug bill that wasn't paid for. now, there are certainly places to cut. right now we're borrowing $10 billion every single month, $10 billion every single month for military operations in afghanistan to prop up a corrupt and competent karzai regime. but according to the congressional budget office the spending caps contained in this
legislation do not apply to ending that misguided war. that makes no sense to me. the truth is that the best way to deal with our long-term fiscal situation is to grow our economy. that means creating jobs and putting people back to work. this bill does exactly in the wrong direction. i have two children, mr. speaker, who i love more than anything, and i don't want them to grow up in a country where the gap between the very rich and poor grows wider and wider each year. we can do better, mr. speaker. we must do better. and we can do so in a way that does not abandon the principles of economic justice and fairness that has made our nation so great. ilvote no on this bill. -- i will vote no on this bill. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: mr. speaker, i yield myself one minute to say to my rules committee colleague that time and time agn he criticizes the tax cuts that have been put into place. they really are the bush-obama tax cuts because we all know
last december president obama signed an extension of those. i think it's important for us to look at the 2003 revenue flow and rook at what happened just a few short years later in 2007. in 2003, mr. speaker, we had $1,562,000,000,000 in -- excuse me $1,782,000,000,000 in revenues to the federal treasury. in 2007 after those tax cuts were put into place we had $2, 567,000,000,000 in revenues. that was a $587 billion increase, a 44% increase in the take that the federal government had because of the implementation of those cuts. it's important to recognize that if we can grow the economy we can generate an increase in the flows of revenue to the federal treasury. i'm proud to yield a minute and a half to the gentleman from
ohio, mr. latourette. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. latourette: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank you for the recognition. this moment in time on the floor reminds me exactly during a period in the 1990's. there is a lot of publicy given to the new freshman class and the freshman class of 1994 is being neglected. welfare reform was the discussion. we -- our proposals were mean to pregnant women and children and poor people. the president of the united states, plirn, decided he wasn't going -- president clinton decided he wasn't going to be the president of the rhetoric. he was going to be the president of the united states. he signed the welfare bill. the friends at that time looked like their dogs had all died because they were so depressed. president clinton decided to lead. now, i don't know what's going on in all of the other offices
but we've taken a lot of phone calls over the last four, five weeks. some people call in tell me to hold the lines. some people call in and tell me i'm an idiot. but most says you have to work it out. to the credit of the president, barack obama, he had the speaker, speaker boehner, nancy pelosi, harry reid, mcmcconnell, down at the white house to work it out. i don't think i will listen to this continuous harang of how we're being mean to people because i don't think people on that side of the aisle believes that president barack obama would do the horrible things that the people are indicating he would do. i just don believe it. and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from massachutts. mr. mcgovern: mr. speaker, i yid myself 10 seconds. mr. speaker, i hear a lot about the bush tax cuts. if they were so good where are the jobs? i think it's simply wrong to have the middle class in this
country bear the burden when the donald trumps are getting tax cuts. i yield one minute to the gentlewoman from texas, ms jackson lee. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman from texas is recognized for one minute. ms. jackson lee: i thank the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. speaker, this is a very tough place to put america. not members of congress. we are paid to come here and do our job. but it's a very tough place to put america. and so i have a simple state of facts to present tod and listen to my other colleagues, which i will, because it is a tough decision to in actuality support legislation that seems to be driven by thoughts that the only way to get something done is to hold whole country hostage and a whole congress
hostage. on the brink of august 2, we're now throwing something on the floor that is arguably supposed to be helpful. i am concerned that there are nuances in this legislation that will hurt people that we all care about, but it's a tough decision not to say yes to having america pay her bills. i hope for once that once we get past today that we will not in any way yield again to the voices of 87 members who care nothing about america and simply cares about their way or the highway. i am upset and this is -- the speaker pro mpore: the gentlewoman's time has expired mr. dreier: i was recognized, mr. speaker. e speaker pro tempore: the chair will advise all members to respect the gavel. the gentlewoman was out of order. the gentleman from california. mr. dreier: thought i was recognized. thank you very much, mr. speaker. at this time i'm happy to yield
a minute and half to mr. which the field. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from kentucky is recognized. mr. wittman: i rise in support of this legislation -- mr. whitfield: i rise in support of this legislation and i think that president obama, the leaders in the house and the senate shall be given a warm congratulations on being able to come to some agreement t prevent america from defaulting on its debt. we all know that this is not a perft piece ofegislation. but one of the real positives of this legislation is the joint commission that's going to be established by six members from the house, six members from the senate that will come up for recommendations to reduce federal spending. and we do know that exempt from that is social security, veterans benefits as well as medicaid. those who really need health care the most. but i've heard a lot of discussion today about this is not about jobs and i would just
point out that getting our financial house in order is very important but we all recognize if you read any newspaper recently, you will find out that in this administration the excess of regulations coming out, particularly from e.p.a., has been a realindrance to job creation in america. and not only that, but the health care bill that was adopted last year because of the sun earn -- uncertainty. so this is an important first step on getting our financial house in order. next we need to start working on removing uncertainty on th regulatory side of the government. and so i would urge everyone to support this legislation. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair would advise the gentleman from massachusetts has three minutes remaining. the gentleman from california has 3/4 minutes remaining. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. mcgovern: one final speaker so if the gentleman has others. you're good? all right. at this time, mr. speaker, i'd like to yield two minutes to the gentleman from maryland, the democratic whip, mr. hoyer.
the spear pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for dwo minutes. -- two minutes -- for two minutes. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman for yielding. we have missed, in my opinion, a wonderful opportunity. an opportunity to make a grand bargain ashe speaker wanted to do, as leader pelosi wanted to do, as leader reid wanted to do, as the president wanted to do and as the vice president wanted to do. for months now the world has looked to america and asked whether we were still a nation that paid s bills. or whether thanks to the ideologicalal intrin generals of a few we would do the unthinkable and default on our obligations. we are a more responsible and honorable nation than that. we are only that the point because the far right wing for the first time in american history has chosen to hold our economy hostage in order to enact the radical, ideological agenda far out of step with the majority of americans. if nothing else, these months have shown the american people
who puts our country's welfare first and would who would rather have ideological purity at all costs. i am voting for this bill. not because i like this bill, although it does do sol things that i think need -- some things that i think need to be done. we need to bring down the deficit, we need to address the debt, we need to return to fiscal responsibility. but default for the united states is not an option. this would affect all of the people that i represent and all of the people of this country if we defaulted. at the very least this bill averts that outcome. by paying our bills through 2013, which will bring certainty to a struggling economy that badly needs it. this bill cuts spending by1.2 trillion and also establishes a process to arrive at additional spen